Since plastic surgeons began doing breast augmentations in the late 1960s, two questions have always dogged both prospective patients and their surgeons…
- As you consider breast augmentation, which size implant will give you what you want?
- And how do you communicate that to your surgeon?
We all know that a “C” cup varies with different Bra Manufacturers. So what we need is communication which is visual, so you can show us what you want and then we can deliver a surgical result that is what you expect.
To meet this need, there are two new options, imaging and sizing kits, each of which has its limitations.
IMAGING SOFTWARE: Recently, several companies developed software which attempts to fill this need digitally. While on an office visit, the practice takes a picture your chest and then the software manipulates your image after plugging in a number of things, like height weight, breast feeding, desired bra size, etc. The computer then magically spits out a potential results, which purports to show accurately what your breasts will look like after augmentation.
I have sincere reservations about this approach which I want tell you about. First, the accuracy of the imaging is only as good as the software capability. Several of my colleagues reviewed the existing systems at a recent meeting and found that, while improving all the time, the software still does not produce a truly accurate simulation of the augmented breasts.
Secondly, in most cases, the imager is not the Surgeon, but may be a photographer or a patient coordinator. While these professionals are highly skilled at what they do, they don’t have the experience, knowledge and technical expertise of the surgeon. This, I’m afraid can set up false or unrealistic expectations, and nothing is worse than eagerly looking forward to a certain look, and finding yourself not matching your expectations. I think the Technology is in its infancy still, and will probably improve with time, but as with anything you consider. Buyer Beware. We made the decision to wait until we think the results are more realistic.
SIZING KITS: The next approach being introduced is to sell you a sizing kit as a “pre-consult” step to considering breast augmentation. Again, I like the concept but not the execution. Until you meet personally with a board certified plastic surgeon, you do not know what implant size is possible for you anatomically. Your own body sets limits on size that must be observed by your surgeon. So you need to meet with a surgeon before you can know your size options.
CURVES CONNECTION: I prefer to have you try implants on in the office, our so called Curves Connection™, where you can more realistically see what different implants look and feel like. I also like to have you bring in your own pictures, so we can discuss your expectations and get a clear idea of what you want to look like. I find this is very accurate and we “get it Right” with a high degree of accuracy.
Remember, nothing can replace the communication you have with your surgeon at the consultation. So be sure to ask all the questions you have, even the tough ones. Your surgeon should be able to give you straight, understandable answers.